Looking to visit the best gay bars in Puerto Vallarta?
Mexico’s most popular LGBT beach resort offers a lively gay bar scene, featuring over 20 cantinas, clubs and cabarets.
While Puerto Vallarta is famous for its gay nightlife, it also offers chic gay beach clubs by day, a handful of annual LGBT festivals and Mexico’s best drag cabaret.
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Gay Bars Puerto Vallarta: Best Time to Visit
The most popular time to visit Puerto Vallarta’s gay bars is when it’s cold in Canada. Snowbirds looking for sunshine arrive to the beach in droves between November and April.
Locals encourage would-be visitors to book a trip in the shoulder season (October and May), to enjoy a more affordable and quiet atmosphere on the beach and streets.
Looking to visit Puerto Vallarta gay bars during a festival or event? These are the most popular times of year for gay travellers to visit the Mexican beach resort.
- Beef Dip: Puerto Vallarta’s bear week takes place each year between late January and early February. The festival attracts beefy, scruffy men, and their admirers.
- Puerto Vallarta Carnival: runs late February to early March. Throughout Mexico, this annual celebration takes place during the days leading up to Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. In Puerto Vallarta, Carnival is a huge street party, which includes a parade featuring energetic dancers dressed in bright Caribbean costumes.
- Puerto Vallarta Pride: Orgullo Vallarta Pride is an annual event celebrated the last weekend in May. It was launched in 2013 to celebrate the diverse LGBT community that both lives in and visits Puerto Vallarta. The festival features a colourful rainbow parade and is the largest gay festival in Puerto Vallarta each year.
- White Party: There are two gay “white circuit parties,” that take place in Puerto Vallarta at Mantamar Beach Club: American Thanksgiving in late November, and New Years Eve.
- Semana Santa: during Easter holidays 1 in 5 Mexicans, around 20 million people, travel throughout Mexico during Holy Week. While the holiday isn’t exactly a gay festival per se, Puerto Vallarta’s gay resorts fill with LGBT Mexican’s who come here to party.
- Day of the Dead Festival: Dia De Los Muertos is celebrated in early November across Mexico. Puerto Vallarta celebrates by erecting massive skeleton sculptures along the Malacon. The city also offers free Mexican folk dance shows and a lively parade.
Best Hotels Near Puerto Vallarta Gay Bars
Puerto Vallarta has the largest number of gay hotels and resorts in Mexico. There are also a handful of gay-owned hotels that are straight friendly. You’ll also find resorts that cater to gay families traveling with children. There’s a gay-friendly accommodation option for everyone in Puerto Vallarta!
- Casa Cupula: this luxury boutique hotel sits perched over Puerto Vallarta’s gaybourhood. The chic property just launched a new signature restaurant, by the lesbian couple behind popular Bistro Teresa. During high season Casa Cupula hosts a popular clothing-optional pool party every Saturday featuring go go dancers and DJ. The price point for rooms here are higher so the clientele tend to skew older.
- Almar Resort: is a gay luxury boutique hotel that sits on a hillside overlooking the wildly popular Mantamar Beach Club. The gay resort attracts more of a millennial crowd as the prices are a bit less steep then neighbouring Casa Cupula. Interior design throughout the hotel is contemporary chic. Head to Top Sky Bar to enjoy the best panoramic views over Zona Romantica. The popular gay bar is also the best place in Puerto Vallarta to watch RuPauls Drag Race. Shangela frequently goes on vacation here.
- Hotel Mercurio: located a 10-minute walk from Los Muertos Beach, Hotel Mercurio is a great option for gay men on a budget. Hotel Mercurio features a 24 hour adults-only pool and complimentary buffet breakfast.
- Blue Chairs Resort: was the first gay and lesbian beachfront resort to open in Puerto Vallarta. The historic gay hotel offers guests a stellar location, directly beside Mantamar Beach Club, in the heart of gay Puerto Vallarta. The hotel is in need of an upgrade, so consider paying the price for its convenient location.
- Rivera del Rio Boutique Hotel: this quirky gay-owned boutique hotel overlooks Puerto Vallarta’s river. The chic lobby and luxury suites feature eclectic antiques.
- Marriott Puerto Vallarta: located at the marina, the Marriott Resort is an ideal hotel for gay families on holiday. The property features Puerto Vallarta’s largest pool, full-service spa, beautiful beachfront and a handful of excellent restaurants. The Marriott offers fun kid programming throughout the day, perfect for gay parents looking to ensure their children have a memorable holiday.
Puerto Vallarta Gay Beach Clubs
No beach holiday is complete unless you’ve spent an afternoon partying in the sun at one of the best Puerto Vallarta gay beach clubs. All three of Puerto Vallarta’s gay beach clubs are located on the southern stretch of Los Muertos Beach.
- Mantamar Beach Club: owned by Almar Resort, Mantamar is Puerto Vallarta’s best gay beach club. The luxurious beach club offers similar quality service, food and beverage program, and VIP exclusivity as you’d expect in Ibiza. Mantamar Beach Club hosts Puerto Vallarta’s best white parties and is the place to be on New Years Eve.
- Sapphire Ocean Club: is a more intimate gay beach club offering in Puerto Vallarta. It features a recently renovated pool, restaurant and massage spa.
- Blue Chairs Resort: is Puerto Vallarta’s historic gay beach club as it was the destination’s first LGBT hotel. Blue Chairs Beach Club is an excellent option for gay men on a budget. It’s the place to be if you want to enjoy a beach day but are keen to avoid the entrance fees at nearby Sapphire and Mantamar.
Gay Bars Puerto Vallarta with Miss. Conception
Kevin Levesque is a celebrated drag performer who transforms into Miss. Conception at the best Toronto gay bars. Levesque first visited Puerto Vallarta in 2010 for Beef Dip, the Mexican gay beach destination’s popular Bear Week. Levesque describes his first visit, “I went on vacation and saw some shows at the Palm Cabaret. I fell in love with Puerto Vallarta and the cabaret was a dream of mine to work at.”
Miss. Conception approached Mark Rome who was the director at the time about getting a job at Puerto Vallarta’s best drag cabaret. After selling her skills as a “female delusionist extraordinaire,” Rome challenged her to perform a one hour show live. Miss. Conception reminisces about that special moment, “He offered me the job right there on the spot after looking at my DVD. Yes, I carried a promotional DVD everywhere I went!”
In December 2011 Miss. Conception took a stab at her first run at Puerto Vallarta’s gay bars. The popular Toronto-based drag queen now spends 6 months a year (November to April) in gay Puerto Vallarta, performing 3 shows a week. “I perform at the largest and longest running cabaret in Puerto Vallarta called The Palm Cabaret. The shows are all live singing from drag to singers to bands and comedians. There are also other wonderful venues like Incanto Vallarta, Nacho Daddy’s and Act 2 stages,” says Miss. Conception.
When asked if the gay bars in Puerto Vallarta have evolved since her first visit in 2010, Miss. Conception exclaims, “Wow, it’s expanded hugely! When I first arrived there were seven or nine Puerto Vallarta gay bars. Now there’s over 20 bars and clubs!”
So how is the gay nightlife in Puerto Vallarta unique? Miss. Conception explains, “The drag shows at Paco’s Ranch feature local queens and do a great job at showcasing Mexican culture and the late night nightlife in Puerto Vallarta. If you want to feel like a Mexican Cowboy then ride off to Los Amigos where you’ll hear good old fashioned Mexican music!”
Looking for an incentive to start drinking early at the gay bars in Puerto Vallarta? Miss. Conception shares her insider tips, “Tons of bars offer happy hour from 4-7pm. You’ll find deals such as 2 for 1 drink specials, dollar beers or cheap margaritas. Apaches, Anonimo, La Chachalaca and Backstage all have great happy hours and small snacks.”
Best Gay Bars Puerto Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta’s gay bars are all located in the neighbourhood of Zona Romatica, on the southern tip of Los Muertos Beach.
With over 20 gay bars and clubs in Puerto Vallarta, it can be daunting to navigate the LGBT nightlife scene. Tim Wilson, founder of Gay PV Magazine, hosts regular gay bar hopping tours in Puerto Vallarta.
Joining a gay bar hopping tour is a great way to meet other LGBT tourists on holiday. The group usually meets around 9pm and the tour ends at 1am. By the end of the tour you’ll have visited 4 or 5 unique bars and clubs. Puerto Vallarta’s gay clubs are busiest between 1am and 6am. Tim does a great job at learning about what kind of vibe you’re looking for. He’ll then suggest the best bars to visit during the rest of your night on the town.
Puerto Vallarta also offers two strip clubs, Anthropology and Wet Dreams, and a bathhouse called Club-Sauna Spartacus.
Lázaro Cárdenas 247, 52-322-223-4488
If Puerto Vallarta had one gay bar that everyone visited at least once on vacation it would be Mr. Flamingo. It’s the city’s best watering hole, a popular bar to pre-drink before going clubbing into the wee hours of the morning.
Mr. Flamingo’s design concept offers a tiki bar Hawaiian vibe, with its main appeal being its location. It sits perched right on the corner of two of the busiest streets in Puerto Vallarta’s gay village.
During the day skip by Mr. Flamingo and you’ll find graffiti portraits of famous gay icons like Britney Spears sketched onto its garage doors. At night, the space opens up as the doors are pushed sky high. Because so much of the bar is open concept, it’s considered the best gay bar in Puerto Vallarta for those looking to people watch.
Mr. Flamingo’s is a great place to dance under a disco ball. You’ll see a mixed crowd of gay men, local Mexicans and straight women who love dancing to old school ballads by Spice Girls, Whitney Houston and Madonna.
Mr. Flamingo is located beside La Margaria and La Noche, and across from CC Slaughters. It’s open from 2pm-3am and offers a happy hour from 2-7pm.
Ignacio L. Vallarta 278, 52-322-222-7667
Paco’s Ranch is one of Puerto Vallarta’s most historic gay bars. It’s newer location is just one block away from the original Paco Paco’s.
Long the centre of nightlife, Paco’s Ranch is one of the Mexican beach town’s most popular late-night gay clubs. The DJ’s here are known for playing a mix of pop hits with country classics.
The double-decker space features a central horseshoe bar and dancing on the main floor as well as a wrap around balcony where you can peep at the action below.
Paco’s Ranch is one of the best gay bars in Puerto Vallarta to watch drag shows. Catch the drag shows Tuesday at 1:30am and Wednesday through Sunday at 12:30am and 3am.
Paco’s Ranch is open 7 days a week from 8pm-6am. Happy hour is 10pm to midnight all week long.
La Noche originally opened its doors in 2002 as a small martini lounge in Puerto Vallarta. Since its recent top to bottom makeover, La Noche now boasts three bars, a stage and garden rooftop.
While the main floor is where all the action is, don’t forget to climb the stairs to the second and third floors. You’ll find an outdoor palm garden offering pretty views over Zona Romantica and the surrounding Sierra Madre mountains.
Today, La Noche is famous for its lip synching drag shows, acrobatic go go dancers and jaw-dropping circus acts. The poplar pre-club venue is well loved by both locals and tourists as its features buff bartenders who sling drinks to old-school house music.
La Noche is open 3pm-3am 7 nights a week. Its popular go go dancing shows run Thursday to Sunday at 11:30pm.
Calle Rodolfo Gómez 157, 52-322-152-8566
Anonimo Video Bar is a famous hole-in-the-wall gay bar in Puerto Vallarta. Skip inside the front door and you’ll find an intimate bar featuring two screens that play music videos.
Anonimo means anonymous in Spanish, encouraging single travelers to hop up on a bar stool and meet new friends. It recently opened a third floor and spacious rooftop patio, featuring a giant graffiti mural of an iguana.
Anonimo Video Bar is open daily from 3pm-2am. Happy hour runs from 4-7pm.
Calle Venustiano Carranza 239, 52-322-222-7802
Los Amigos is a gay Mexican cantina located on the third floor of an old building in Puerto Vallarta’s Zona Romantica. Skip inside and you’ll find a pool table, horseshoe bar, huge outdoor patio and two large video screens.
We suggest visiting Los Amigos in the earlier hours of the evening. Don’t expect to pay a cover or fancy drinks here. Los Amigos is one of the cheapest gay bars in Puerto Vallarta. Play a game of pool with locals while sipping $2 bottles of Corona or Modelo Especial.
Lázaro Cárdenas 254, 52-322-222-3412
CC Slaughters is a gay bar and club in Puerto Vallarta that originally launched as a concept in Portland, Oregon.
Opened in May, 1981 by John Adams, CC Slaughters name is inspired by Christopher Columbus Slaughters. He was a renowned Texas rancher, rumoured to have left the closet just after his wife died.
In 2010, CC Slaughters new owner, John Houston, traveled to Mexico and visited Puerto Vallarta. He quickly fell in love with the place and people, opening CC Slaughters Puerto Vallarta on December 9, 2011. The popular bar is located across the street from Mr. Flamingo and La Margarita Bar.
The venue is split into two sections – a smaller, front portion features video screens and windows that open onto Lazaro Cardenas Street. The second space offers a larger club vibe where local gays and tourists dance until the wee hours of the morning. CC Slaughters club area is air-conditioned and features booths, tables and spacious tiered dance floor.
Ignacio L. Vallarta 278, 52-322-108-4358
Code is Puerto Vallarta’s most luxurious gay club. The recent addition to Zona Romantica is an upscale nightclub featuring five-star table service, jaw-dropping decor and a display of kaleidoscope inspired visuals.
Skip inside Code gay nightclub in Puerto Vallarta and you’ll find floor to ceiling video screens that play eye-popping visuals. A DJ stands above the well-dressed crowd, who enjoy bottle service at plush leather couches. Bottles of vodka, whisky and champagne are served out of petite, ice-filled vintage bathtubs.
When you arrive you’ll find dozens of eager staff dressed in white chef jackets keen to tend to your bottle service needs. Take note, you can walk past the DJ booth to the back of the bar and order a bottle of beer if you’re not looking to make such a big beverage investment.
The clubs interior features sky-high ceilings, which are outfitted with hundreds of glowing lights. Each evening at around 1am Code nightclub puts on a wild show. Hundreds of glowing orbs descend from the ceiling, truly a sight to behold!
Lázaro Cárdenas 258, 52-322-191-6987
Industry Nightclub is brought to you by the creators of Puerto Vallarta’s White Party at Mantamar Beach Club. Located in the heart of Zona Romantica, Industry gay club is located next door to Mr. Flamingo, La Margarita and CC Slaughters.
Inspired by empty warehouses and commercial spaces with low rents transformed by circuit partiers in gay cities during the 70s, Industry is Puerto Vallarta’s gritty leather-themed dance club.
Skip inside Industry and you’ll find state of the art lighting and sound equipment alongside Tom of Finland-inspired artwork. The main floor features a massive circular bar, dance floor and DJ booth. March up the stairs and you’ll find a wrap around balcony and lounge.
Industry Nightclub regularly hosts international gay DJs and feature go go dancers who perform until the wee hours of the morning.
Lázaro Cárdenas 315A, 52-322-109-9703
Looking for the best karaoke bar in Puerto Vallarta? Kooky Karaoke in Zona Romantica is a friendly gay bar, perfect for those who want to sing on stage.
Skip inside Kooky Karaoke Bar and you’ll find two bars, plenty of tables to gather with friends and a series of plush banquettes. On the Kooky Karaoke stage you’ll find two microphones and a selection of colourful wigs to get you into that Rockstar mood!
Insurgentes 301a, 52-322-222-3668
Bar Frida first opened its doors in 2001 in the heart of Puerto Vallarta’s gay Zona Romantica neighbourhood.
Skip inside the historic gay bar and on the main floor you’ll find a cozy bar featuring 4-top tables and a parade of framed portraits of celebrated Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo.
At the back of the bar you’ll find a vintage spiral staircase, which takes you to Bar Frida’s second story restaurant. The kitchen serves classic Mexican cantina bar snacks such as hot wings, stuffed Jalapeños, nachos and guacamole. If you’re visiting Bar Frida for a late dinner, grab a seat by the window as its a great perch for people watching.
Bar Frida is most famous for its fresh squeezed lime margaritas, so order one, two or three before hitting the clubs later in the evening.
Bar Friday offers drink specials throughout the week including cheap beer, Bacardi, margaritas and Bloody Marys.
Olas Altas 414, 52-322-171-2090
La Cueva Cantina is an old school gay cowboy bar located on the second floor of a building in Zona Romantica.
Skip up the steps to La Cueva Cantina and you’ll find a pool table, selection of tables and chairs and friendly Mexican bar. The interior is really rustic and bare bones, which matches the cheep beer and cocktail prices.
The music here is a mix of English pop and Spanish beats. La Cueva Cantina is the only gay bar in Puerto Vallarta where if you dress up like a cowboy you get a free shot of tequila!
The popular Mexican cantina offers karaoke at 9:30pm on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. Gay Bingo offers great prizes during the high season (October to April) every Thursday from 7-9:30pm. Barbecue feasts are served every Saturday from 4-7pm, 70 pesos for carne asada and a drink.
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Amapas 380, 52-322-222-4911
The Top Sky Bar is located in the luxurious Almar Resort. The gay Puerto Vallarta hotel’s rooftop bar and restaurant offers jaw-dropping panoramic views of Zona Romantica and the Mantamar Beach Club below.
The sky-high al fresco space features chic beach-inspired furniture, a choir of hot tubs sitting perched over the ocean, and one of Puerto Vallarta’s largest stages.
The Top Sky Bar offers one of Puerto Vallarta’s best margarita lists (get the spicy Jalapeno number) and brunch menus (we suggest selecting from one of the omelette options).
During lunch and dinner service you’ll find classic Mexican fare including mole enchiladas, ceviche, quesadillas and tacos.
The Top Sky Bar at Almar Resort is famous for hosting the best RuPaul’s Drag Race party in Puerto Vallarta. The city’s top drag queens regularly perform on the open air stage. If you’re lucky you might spot Shangela, the famous American drag performer regularly vacations at the Almar Resort.
Púlpito 142, 52-322-223-5753
Garbo’s Piano Bar is an upscale martini bar popular with older gay men in Puerto Vallarta.
It’s one of the best gay bars in Puerto Vallarta to enjoy live music. Bands begin to play at 10:30pm with a weekly schedule featuring jazz, latin, broadway tunes and classical music.
The elegant yet minimalist piano bar is open daily from 6pm-2am.
Olas Altas 439, 52-322-429-8885
Apache’s Martini Bar originally opened in 1997 and was managed by two local lesbians, Mari-Ann Rattray and Endra Buining. One of Puerto Vallarta’s most historic gay watering holes, Apache’s is now owned by a gay couple from Mexico and Winnipeg.
Skip inside Apache’s Martini Bar and you’ll find an intimate interior. Across from the friendly bartender you’ll find a wall covered in work by local LGBT artists.
The most popular spot to sip cocktails at Apache’s Martini Bar is on its sidewalk patio as it offers a perfect perch to people watch. Visit between 5-7pm to enjoy happy hour.
La Margarita Bar
Lázaro Cárdenas 257, 52-322-222-1367
La Margarita Bar is located in the heart of Zona Romantica, beside popular gay bars like CC Slaughters, La Noche and Mr. Flamingo.
La Margarita Bar Puerto Vallarta first opened its doors in Fall 2013. The popular gay bar is famous for its legendary margaritas, which are served around a circular bar.
The interior of La Margarita Bar features colourful lamps that look like agave, pineapples and Day of the Dead skulls. Happy Hour runs from 2-7pm and the margarita of the day is always on sale for 30 pesos.
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Calle 1 Púlpito 115, 52-322-222-0275
Blondies is one of the most popular gay bar brands in Puerto Vallarta. So much so, that there are now two Blondies locations in Zona Romantica. The original Blondies can still be found at the corner of Amapas and Pulpito, but we suggest checking out the newest iteration.
Los Otros Blondies features a fancy slushie bar and intimate lounge. Skip to the back of the bar and you’ll find an impressive retail store selling an endless assortment of the iconic Puerto Vallarta gay bars retro comic designs. You’ll find Blondie motifs printed on backpacks, t-shirts, fanny packs, keychains and glassware.
Blondies is the best gay bar in Puerto Vallarta for frozen cocktail lovers. The bartender here has crafted a drinks list featuring fresh fruit juices and premium spirits. Happy hour runs from 4-6pm.
Lázaro Cárdenas 361, 52-322-205-0433
Reinas means “queens” in Spanish, which is an apt name for this Queen Elizabeth-inspired gay bar.
The owner of Bar Reinas, Marco from the Netherlands, has gone balls to the wall with the royalty theme. Skip inside the popular gay bar in Puerto Vallarta and you’ll find portraits of British nobility, old English busts, sparkling chandeliers and a life size cut out of Queen Elizabeth herself!
Guests can also make use of tiaras, dresses and feather boas to play dress up. They also offer drag queen shows throughout the week. Open from 4pm-2am with happy hour, dubbed “Queens Tea,” from 4-7pm.
Calle Francisco I. Madero #257, 52-322-141-7553
Skip up the steps to the second floor of Puerto Vallarta’s best gay hostel and you’ll find an open air bar and lounge.
Velas Lounge feels like a synergy between Mexican cantina and contemporary gay bar. The rooftop bar in Zona Romantica features comfy couches, potted palm trees, intimate bar and elegant white curtains, which sway in the breeze.
Order an ice muddled margarita or cool bottle of Mexican beer and sip while people watching over the balcony. Velas Lounge is open 8pm-2am Tuesday to Sunday.
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